It’s easy to think “that won’t happen to us” when reading about the latest ransomware attack or data breach. Small business owners may think cybercriminals are more focused on the big name enterprises to hack. Yet, businesses of any size and industry are at risk of cyberattack. That’s just one of the reasons why businesses need data backup.
The news is not good for a business that suffers unforeseen data loss. Global consulting firm Gartner estimates network downtime costs about $300,000. For one hour! That sixty minutes could mean bankruptcy for a small business.
With a readily accessible data backup, the business can get up and running again more quickly. The many reasons why businesses need data backup include:
- Reducing downtime after cyberattack
- Protection against natural disasters
- Ensuring compliance
- Improving productivity
- Maintaining reputation
Reducing Downtime After Cyberattack
Cybercriminals are targeting businesses and individuals. Some are in it for the money. Others are looking to disrupt systems (government or critical infrastructure). Espionage and identity theft are motivations too. This means every small business—from the hardware store to the cleaning service—is at risk.
Sometimes the hacker is looking to infiltrate your business systems to get your proprietary data, personnel records, or client information. Other times your business is just a stepping stone in part of a larger attack. Perhaps you are a vendor to a bigger target. Or they simply want to add your network’s processing power to their army of bots doing their nefarious deeds.
Whatever the reason, a cyberattack can be catastrophic for a small business. Especially if you don’t have a data backup. According to research by Nationwide Insurance, “68 percent of SMBs don’t have a disaster recovery plan.” Yet, preventative measures aren’t enough. Yes, you want to install network security solutions, implement strong firewall configurations, and regularly patch and manage vulnerabilities. But having a solution in place for mitigating data loss is essential too.
Also, with a data backup in place, your business is less likely to have to pay the ransom to a cybercriminal who gains access to your network and encrypts your data.
Protection Against Natural Disasters
Cybercriminals aren’t the only threat to your data. As the world is warming up, extreme weather is growing more common. Consider Hurricane Isaias, which battered parts of the east coast of the United States in 2020. The named storm “spawned flooding, power outages, and tornadoes, leading to an estimated $4.2 billion in total damages.” This included: physical damage to technology and the damage wrought by phishing and other scams that increase in the wake of natural disasters.
A natural disaster hitting your business setting could be even more damaging if you don’t have a data backup. Even a utility failure on a smaller scale, just your block, for instance, can be extremely disruptive to businesses that don’t have a backup of all the data they rely upon daily.
Get the basics on Top Backup Options for Small Business.
Many businesses have to comply with government, tax, financial, or other industry standards. In a 2020 IT Priorities study, “The compliance policies with the greatest effect on IT departments were the European Union (EU)’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (92%), Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (32%) and Sarbanes-Oxley (14%).”
Part of that compliance requires continued access to data over the long term. Don’t risk the heavy fines of noncompliance by risking your data backups. Additionally, many data backups can actually add business transparency by making it easier to manage, monitor, and protect sensitive data automatically.
Think of it on an individual scale. How long does it take you to get back in the flow and focus after an unexpected interruption? Now, multiply that across your business. Add the uncertainty of when things will return to normal, and you have employees who are interrupted and anxious.
Research on “Time Bandits” at work found interruptions can eat up an average of nearly four hours each day. Time lost to stress and fatigue adds another 50 minutes.
With a proactive data backup, your business can be more resilient in the face of the unexpected. People can get back to work more quickly, and they don’t have to recreate as much data lost. This improves productivity and can help with retention as your employees will experience less stress from the unforeseen data loss.
Customers, investors, and employees all want to know that their data is safe with you. Backing up business data helps you maintain trust as your organization’s productivity is not torpedoed by downtime.
According to Security Magazine,
- Fifty-two percent of consumers said security is an important or main consideration when purchasing products or services.
- Fifty-two percent of consumers would consider paying for the same products or services from a provider with better security.
Ultimately, the shorter the inconvenience due to downtime, the better your business will fare with its stakeholders. The data backup makes the difference.Data loss protection is essential to how your business can manage downtime. Now that you understand why businesses need data backups, you’re probably wondering what to do about it. We’ll cover that in more detail next. In the meantime, it’s a good idea to partner with a website hosting company that provides backup and recovery.